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The ultimate build for a Kensai/Mage?

Discussion in 'Baldur's Gate 2: Shadows of Amn' started by Sir Ai Rayzor, Apr 16, 2003.

  1. Sir Ai Rayzor

    Sir Ai Rayzor Gems: 7/31
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    How can one build the ultimate human Kensai/Mage?

    ...and I mean stats, when to dual (Kensai -> Mage), which spells to choose and which weapons to go after.. a complete guide for it all ;)

    Maybe some descriptions on when to do what in the game? (when to pick the ring of xxxx and so on)

    This is the one that I've got so far:

    STR: 18
    DEX: 12
    CON: 18
    INT: 17
    WIS: 3
    CHR: 3 (going to pick up the Ring of Human influence)

    What do you think?

    Any help is appreciated :)
     
  2. dmc

    dmc Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Well, you are powergaming, so what are you doing with such lousy stats? With a little patience you can have 93-95 total points, which would give you 18, 18, 18, 18, 18, x (ring of human influence will bump this to 18 when visiting merchants). If you don't want to wait for the 93 + step, you can still have wisdom of 15 with a total of 90 points.

    If you really want to powergame, run a fighter through BG1 & TOTSC after rolling the 93+ range and, with all of the tomes, you will be able to import a character (fighter) who can be a Kensai, with 161K exp and the following stats: 19, 19, 19, 19, 21, 4-6. (Remember that there are 3 tomes of wisdom in BG1.)

    As for dualling, that is really dependent on how you are using the character and whether you expect to take him/her through TOB. Assuming just SOA (or you wouldn't have posted in this forum after reading the rules), you probably want to dual earlier to ramp up spellcasting power. Maybe 9th level after weapon proficiency bonus. If you wait until 13th level (I think that's when you get the next 1/2 attack per round), you are not going to have a great deal of time to bump up the mage part to reactivate the Kensai part. You didn't indicate if you are soloing, which would solve the experience problem but make you ripe for the picking when you dual class.

    As for the "stuff" to get, it's too numerous to mention, depends on your money situation, depends on how you plan on playing the character, and is completely subjective with the exception of certain obvious choices for mages (robe of vecna, staff of the magi).

    When building the character, you may want to take five stars in staff because of the staff of the magi, if that's your playing style.
     
  3. Oaz

    Oaz Gems: 29/31
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    I think that Kensai/Mage is an already souped-up class that doesn't really need any more powering.

    But since you insist, just press Ctrl + 8. Sheesh. Is there no room for delayed gratification in this hedonistic world?
     
  4. Sir Ai Rayzor

    Sir Ai Rayzor Gems: 7/31
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    Thanks for the good advice dmc :) :) :)

    I wanted to create a kensai/mage for both soloing and partying ;)

    As for weapons and alike I was going for Dak'kons Zerth Blade and some other sword..

    C'Jakob.. Advice and stats, not opinions :yot:
     
  5. vlad

    vlad Gems: 1/31
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    Wait, kensai/mage? I thought kensai could only dual-class to a thief... at least thats all that showed up on my kensai when I dual classed him. Or is there a some requirement im missing? Hmm now that I think about it, if fighters can become mages, why cant kensai...
     
  6. Earl Grey

    Earl Grey Mmm... hot tea!

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    Things depend on if you solo or not.

    Kensai to level 9 (as long as you don't intend to continue with ToB), then dual to mage.

    - Stats
    Intelligence should be 18. Strength must be 15 or more to allow you to dual. I like to keep Wisdom at 18 as well, but it is irrelevant. Constitution and Dexterity can be kept low since you can keep those stats at 18 with items. Charisma at 3 is ok as well thanks to the ring you can get very early.

    Assuming a total roll of 80, which is very easy to get, I'd arrange the stats like this:
    Str 17 (you do well even without giant girdle)
    Dex 18 (no need for the gauntlets now)
    Con 6
    Int 18
    Wis 18
    Cha 3

    - Weapon
    You don't have to go with Katanas and if you do you don't need to go dual wielding. Actually I prefer Celestial Fury in the main hand and the Shield of Harmony in the off hand. If you still want to use a weapon in the off hand there are better options than Dak'kon's Zerth Blade, like Flail of the Ages and later the ultimate cheese: Crom Faeyr. :D
     
  7. Anathema

    Anathema Gems: 1/31
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    This is my first post correct me if I am wrong, but I seriously think you are underrating the quarterstaves very much.
     
  8. dmc

    dmc Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Wow - first post and it's a thread necromancy from 2003! And probably not really responsive in any event other than tangentially on the item of weapon choice.

    Please feel free to start a new thread extolling the virtues of staves.

    Thanks.
     
  9. SlickRCBD

    SlickRCBD Gems: 20/31
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    You know, with new members like this, it's entirely possible that they have no idea that thread necromancy is sometimes considered bad etiquette. One of the drawbacks of Eternal September.

    Then again, it happens enough around here that nobody chastises the person that I was genuinely starting to think it was acceptable. Not every place frowns on it, some actually prefer it.
     
  10. dmc

    dmc Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Well, we're going far off topic. Thread necromancy is OK if the point is actually, you know, on point. IMO, this wasn't.
     
  11. Taluntain

    Taluntain Administrator Staff Member

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    We've got this covered in our rules (#3) though we're usually even more lenient than it says there. I've got no problems with 10 year old threads being revived, as long as the response is on-topic and meaningful. Basically, if Anathema expanded on his comment it'd be fine... as it is though, it's just kind of a drive-by comment and it makes little sense to bring such an old thread back just for that.
     
  12. SlickRCBD

    SlickRCBD Gems: 20/31
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    I've got to review the rules. :o Especially if they've been updated since I joined all those years ago.
     
  13. Eyebreaker7

    Eyebreaker7 <a href="http://www.sorcerers.net/Supporters/index

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    Personally I go with the Axe for the:

    Axe of Unlielding
    the +1 to AC is nice for the Kensai. then there's the regeneration and the vorpal action and the Constitution boost as well.

    Azureedge
    Does extra damage vs. undead and has the chance to destroy them if they fail a save. Possibly more importantly there's the missile weapon action for it as well.


    On another note, why is it bad to dig up old posts? I would think it good so that the info already posted wouldn't have to be posted again.
     
  14. Blackthorne TA

    Blackthorne TA <a href="http://www.sorcerers.net/Supporters/index Staff Member

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    It's only bad if the dead thread is resurrected for a reason other than the topic, or is addressing some triviality that likely was posted by someone no longer around to read it.
     
  15. SlickRCBD

    SlickRCBD Gems: 20/31
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    Well, my thoughts on the matter are that in light of the popularity of XP cap removers, waiting until level 21 to pick up whirlwind would make an awesomely powerful character in the end. Yes, it would be difficult to slog through as a mage unable to don bracers for half the game, but upon reaching level 22 you'll be a heck of a powerful fighter/mage. I on the other hand usually create a new character in ToB, then dual either right after that first battle with Illasera. Usually at levels 18 or19.

    On the other hand, using Shadowkeeper to change a Kensai to a multiclass kensai/mage would be far less frustrating and more fun, as well as not requiring an XP cap remover to be worthwhile.
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2012
  16. polyblip

    polyblip Gems: 2/31
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    more drive by necromancy

    heya, i landed here via search as i just scratched the surface of soa.. then decided go back as kensai/mage dual. weapon proficiencies are such a commitment i'm lookin online for mechanics and character info but without plot spoilers.

    so...

    1. proficiency advice (willing to reroll again, but i've started with 2pips to 2h sword and 2pips in 2h style)
    i don't know or want to know what weapons i'll end up with in soa or tob.. but a good answer for me, would be what proficiencies not* to get to avoid serious regret later! e.g. i had chosen darts at first on this 'kensage' but rerolled shortly into the game suspecting i'd regret using pips on darts.

    2. what should i accomplish in bg1 before exporting? (i've beaten bg1 once; spoil away)
    could use info on finding those tomes to raise attributes? I'd hate to miss out on that.

    3. i've never done multi-player, so for this character i've dumped wisdom down to 3. will that come back to haunt me?

    thanks for answers to any/all/none or just a /nod that there's life here.

    _polyblip, trying to quit everquest, one day at a time.
     
  17. dmc

    dmc Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Well, looking at my answer from 11 years ago up this thread, I have the same types of questions for you.

    Are you soloing the character or going with a party? Are you planning on playing the character as a fighter with mage tendencies or vice-versa? Answering these two questions will help me give you better answers to your overall questions. However, I'll take a stab.

    1. If in a party, I like my mage types to be in the back mostly and firing spells and missile weapons. Thus, I would go for some sort of bow and a staff as lending themselves for distance. I suppose two handed swords are OK as well, but that would be a proficiency I would think appropriate for front liners. If this is going to be a warrior then I still would lean away from two handed swords because I think shields are important not only for AC bonuses but for additional things they can give you (don't want to spoiler this but there are plenty of shields that give additional benefits on top of straight protection in a fight). Even if I were not going with a shield, I would probably dual wield.

    2. Ideally, you will finish it completely or almost so (you can't get all of the really useful tomes until late in the game). If you look at my first post above from April 16, 2003, you'll see that I advise that it is relatively easy to leave BG1 with 19/19/19/19/21/x in stats. Look in our BG1 section in the main site for guides. There are several that can tell you where to find all of the tomes.

    3. Not sure what you mean. Multi-player involves creating at least two characters for your party, rather than starting with just the one and adding (or not) the NPCs offered by the game. If you meant multi-class, you're actually mistaken in that this is a dual-class build. They are actually rather different. Multi-class characters cannot be human and start with at least two operative classes. The character splits experience between the two or three classes all the way and they never stop increasing unless you hit the experience cap (which most people disable these days). They have snazzy benefits but tend to level up slowly in the beginning and early mid game.

    Dual class characters, however, must be human. They start life as one class and then convert to another at some point. At that point their first class goes inoperative and they level up the second class starting from level one. The initial class does not reactivate until the second class exceeds the first class by one level, at which point both classes become active but the character only advances in the second class and all experience goes to that advancement only. There are stat requirements for that greater than just starting a character ready for either class, but you are going to make sure strength and intelligence are 18 so that doesn't matter. Also, dual classing has the benefit of legally having a kit on your first class (here Kensai for the fighter class). Multi-class characters cannot have a kit on either class the way the game is written (although you can easily edit one in if you feel like it). There are other pluses and minuses that I can get into if you want.

    So, in any of the above scenarios, there really is no downside to having a wisdom of 3 except for what it will do to your lore skill and a couple of spells that look at your wisdom once you cast them. The game does not implement negative wisdom issues found in pen and paper D&D.

    That being said, there's no reason at all to have a wisdom that low. Your dump stat if you are powergaming a character of this nature (and it really lends itself entirely to powergaming anyway) is charisma. You can spend 10 minutes rerolling and I guaranty you will be able to make a character with 18/18/18/18 and at least 15/3 on wisdom and charisma (and with a little more patience, 18/3 or better), so I fail to see the point.

    Welcome to the boards. If you post answers to my questions, I will be able to give you further answers in line with your goals. (Unless someone else comes and does it first.)
     
    polyblip likes this.
  18. polyblip

    polyblip Gems: 2/31
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    firstly, thanks.

    i'll go dual wield afterall. i guess doubling your attacks per round would outweigh the lowered dmg, and crappy offhand thac0. especially to interrupt a nasty spell, and chew thru enemy skins/reflections!

    my goal* is to use her as big melee damage with some fast activated defenses like stoneskin and mirror image. as well as magic dmg in case melee is less than effective or just to damage from the back and avoid nasty ae's. i don't plan on sending her in first usually.

    i'm going dual, not multi-class. (probably at 9/10 because i'm not patient enough to wait til 13/14).

    Which mage spells check your wisdom? hope they're good! cuz im bout to spend the time getting higher wisdom. hehe

    _kill'em before they kill you. ;)
     
  19. dmc

    dmc Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Wish spells check wisdom. Plus it's useful for lore.

    Dual wield does not double your attacks. It adds one for the off hand. The point is both to add some extra damage and to benefit from the off hand weapon's other features (again, not giving you info on the abilities of specific weapons here).

    If your goal is to be fighter with mage benefits, you want to dual at 9 (for the extra weapon pip) or 13 (for the extra half attack per round). I see very little benefit to doing anything else. If you want to be a mage with some fighter benefits, you dual at 7 or 9.

    Remember that you should not overlap weapon pips between the classes because you lose the lesser of the total -- i.e., when you reactivate the first class, the game does not give you the total of the weapon pips in a particular weapon type, it gives your the higher of the two, so you always want to make sure that the lower number is zero. (That means don't take quarterstaff pips as a fighter and then add them as a mage. I personally like the staffs available in the game, but mainly for a mage focus rather than a fighter focus.)

    Although you did not answer directly, I am assuming that you are going with a party. In that case, I would recommend dualling at level 9 because the experience is split between party members and it takes a good, long while to level up to mage 14 after Kensai 13 if you are sharing experience points.
     
  20. polyblip

    polyblip Gems: 2/31
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    yeah, minsc is a little too descriptive about his use of boo in bg2 but.. i still get a kick out of having a party. =p

    thanks again
     
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